Pilot’s Gun Goes Off in Cockpit on US Airways Flight

There were many objections to arming pilots after 9-11 — not the least with the danger of intentionally adding a gun to flights that could be taken by terrorists or mishandled by pilots. For those critics, a US Airways flight from Denver will likely be cited often: a pilot accidentally discharged his weapon in the cockpit during the flight.


It is not currently known where the round ended up in the Airbus A319, which was taken out of service. None of the 124 passengers were injured and the pilot was a member of the the pilot is part of TSA’s Federal Flight Deck Officer (FFDO) program, which trains pilots to carry guns on flights.

Notably, the danger of accidental discharges was one of the issues looked at by Congress in deciding whether to approve this program, here.

For the full story, click here.

8 thoughts on “Pilot’s Gun Goes Off in Cockpit on US Airways Flight”

  1. niblet, you write like someone who may be illegally transporting and selling firearms across state lines. As such, I’m sure you wouldn’t mind if the feds tap your phones, read your emails and track your movements for the next few months without any oversight to speak of. After all, only a liberal would object to profiling.

  2. eoeoeetc.:

    I guess Mike Boyd, of the Boyd Consulting Group, that is quoted in the article as an expert in the field, and a supporter of guns in the cockpit, didn’t get the memo. He said: “‘if somebody who has the ability to fly a 747 across the Pacific wants a gun, you give it to them.’ But [Boyd] said Saturday’s incident could have been much worse. ‘If that bullet had compromised the shell of the airplane, i.e., gone through a window, the airplane could have gone down.'”

    Just another liberal fool I guess since we all know there is no window glass near the cockpit — but still Boyd is one used by the industry to consult on the program. I ‘ll just take eoeoeeo etc.’s word over Boyd’s because of our poster’s precise analysis and understanding of the article.

    P.S. eoeoeo etc: Is English your first or second language?

  3. niblet:

    If we define “terrorists,” like most of the world does, as those who would use their will to subvert the principles of representative democracy (like rights to privacy and nondiscriminatory enforcement of the law) by extra-legal means, then you should really worry about the profiling of suspected terrorists.

    By the way, there are always totalitarian ways to avoid risk. We could simply shoot suspected terrorists on sight, or intern all Arab-looking person found on our shores. Hell, we could eliminate most traffic accidents by outlawing left-hand turns. Is that the world you want? If so, the great expanse of the world lies before you and to coin a popular phrase, “don’t let the door hit you on the way out”!

  4. Number one rule of liberalism is to always go to the liability column of any event. In this case liberals go to the “what if this gun had punctured the skin of the aircraft or hit someone” while ignoring the asset column that would include, obviously, how many terrorists attempts never happened because they knew the pilots were armed.

    JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel’s tough airline security methods — pistol-packing in-flight guards & pilots, grilling of passengers, rifling through luggage, — have helped thwart terrorist attacks in the past. Had they been used in the United States, they might have prevented Tuesday’s horrific airborne 9/11 attacks in New York and Washington. But some would have proved difficult to implement in the United States, and others — like profiling — would not meet the test of the U.S. Constitution.

    Oh, profiling meets the test of the US Constitution in almost everybody’s opinion, except for the liberals.

  5. uh, so many are soooo uninformed.

    The bullets that pilots have in their firearms, as well as the bullets in the firearms for the air marshalls that may be on board, are of a special alloy that fragments when it strikes something harder than a human body.

    Glad to inform you all. Now go back to second guessing the Supreme Court.

  6. JR:

    Jack Reid was my delegate, and a pretty responsible guy. He was an assistant principal at a middle school for goodness sakes. Sadly, he was also human and your point is well taken that despite the best of care, crazy things happen with firearms. When they happen at 35000 feet we call them catastrophic.

  7. Kermudgeon, are you trying to argue that accidental discharge is too rare to be a legitimate concern? Because I recall not too long ago when Jack Reid, a delegate in Virginia’s General Assembly, managed to discharge a handgun in the state capitol: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/26/AR2006012601129.html

    If a licensed and trained citizen like Del. Reid can have an accidental discharge, just about anyone can. NOW IMAGINE THAT IN A PRESSURIZED CABIN AT 35,000 FEET WITH 150 PASSENGERS AT STAKE.

    We don’t let prison guards carry guns because the risk is too great that something will go wrong, and they’re ALWAYS trained professionals. Some situations simply do not lend themselves to little bits of metal traveling at high velocities. It’s no more a violation of the 2nd Amendment to say that there shouldn’t be shooting on airplanes than it is a violation of the 1st to say you can’t yell “fire” in a crowded theater.

  8. Those darn guns. They just never learn to only go off when we need them for protection. I think a lawsuit is in order against gun manufacturers for not developing a gun that can “sense” when it is ok to go off and when it is not.

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